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Substantial surgery - now or later?
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slubu Offline
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Post: #1
Substantial surgery - now or later?
I was contemplating whether to post this or not but thought what better medium than here to get some unbiased opinions, as it's hard to get some objective thoughts from family and friends. The short of it is I have pretty severe scoliosis (curve near 60 lumbar, 40 thoracic) and I need to get surgery done at some point in the next several years. It's a pretty gnarly surgery, takes 1-2 days and they essentially break my spine down across my lower back, straighten it and bolt it down to rods with screws.

When I do this surgery, I'll be out of commission for 3 months, at 50% until the 6 month mark, and get back to 95% at about a year from what I've been told. Some things I will never be able to do again, like swing a baseball bat or golf, anything that requires the big twist of the back. Not that I've done those things anyway in years.

Right now I only have some limitations with the scoliosis as it is. I am in a bit of pain daily, but it's manageable. I can't really lift heavy weights, so that is a constant whether I do the surgery or not. Aesthetically I have a rib hump on my back which is not attractive and despite all the shit about inner game, is always in the back of my mind. The absolute worst part is as the curve progresses, I'm actually getting shorter. In the past two years I've lost 2 inches of height, and this is not guessing but measured loss.

I was going to have the surgery in Spring 2012 but I keep delaying it because I want to travel, keep going in life and taking a year off from that is hard to accept. So basically do I do this in the coming year let's say, or push this back until I'm in my late 30s? I'm 32 right now. Here are the positives and negatives that I see in doing this earlier:

Positives:
- Quicker recovery because I'm younger
- More correction because my spine hardens as I age, so it's more "loose" to be corrected now
- I regain my lost height, so I'd go back to 6'0 and potentially more
- No more pain after recovery time is done
- Aesthetic rib hump gone, though replaced with a big scar (rather have scar than rib hump though)
- Can learn/master a language in my downtime to prep for being abroad more
- Wouldn't mind a "break" from life. Have no responsibilities for a while. No game, no work, no nothing.

Negatives:
- Life's put on hold in arguably my prime years
- The big what if something goes wrong and I'm never the same/paralyzed/etc. Would have given up my prime years
- Can't travel for a while, and would be hesitant to be in Russia for example and something happens to my back
- No weights for a year min, if ever
- Can't have sex I'm guessing for a while
- Big scar
- Potential advances in technology that I would be passing up

What would you guys do? Work is not an issue because I work for myself. I've even scheduled it a few times and cancelled it. I was supposed to do it as I mentioned Spring 2012 but then wanted to go to Europe in the fall. Then was going to do it then decided to got to Iceland for New Year's. Now I'm going to Ukraine/Russia for the summer. Sometimes I think if I would have done it last year I'd already be recovered and ready to go. Then I think about all the fantastic stuff I've done this past year and think how can I give that up. I have to do it sometime though, so when?
05-20-2013 09:29 PM
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WestCoast Offline
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Post: #2
RE: Substantial surgery - now or later?
Since you're asking for a broad opinion, while I have not had that severe of an injury, I have had a severe injury before. The best thing is to just get it over with.

I tore a ligament and had to have extra surgical procedures, so I waited out just the summer period (everyone is having fun from May-July) then just get the surgery. It's better to go through the recovery period in December/Winter time frame because people are usually staying in anyway so you dont miss out on much.

Give yourself as much time as you need to recover and definitely follow whatever rules they give you.

One note, if it is a surgery that is not needed and it is not causing you any pain I would not do it. With all that said go find some people who went through the same surgery as you, I would pay them to give me information on the whole process. Also don't skimp on the doctor quality.
(This post was last modified: 05-20-2013 09:40 PM by WestCoast.)
05-20-2013 09:36 PM
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iknowexactly Offline
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Post: #3
RE: Substantial surgery - now or later?
I can't think of exactly what you should do, but I have a much more minor problem I have also thought about which has some similar variables. (Thinning disks)

1) Will the technology improve so that the surgery becomes less risky/more effective?
What are the odds? How much better will the new tech be? Could it be big, like microsurgery instead of open spine surgery? I have no idea about these things, top surgeons will know more.

2) Will the height loss be irreversible such that you'll end up shorter if you delay surgery?

3) How many people get severely disabled, what's the exact historical percent with the particular surgeon you will use?

4) Can you find out and get the absolute best guy? My impression ( see below) is that outcome is somewhat dependent on the particular surgeon and his skill. Imagine if you went through a 6 year surgery residency, if you were one of the less competent surgeons, you are still going to practice, you have no choice. You don't want that guy.

I am in the mental health field and I had several patients who had had back surgery-- MOST of them complained their pain was worse, but they also had psych problems and their problems were way different than yours so one can't tell what the variables were. there was ONE in particular who spoke highly of the outcome and commented that that surgeon had a good reputation.

I would talk to as many surgeons as possible so you start to get a sense of who knows what they're doing.
(This post was last modified: 05-20-2013 09:39 PM by iknowexactly.)
05-20-2013 09:39 PM
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slubu Offline
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Post: #4
RE: Substantial surgery - now or later?
@WC I was thinking the same thing, do it in the winter where there is more downtime in general. Plus I can watch football which I like and pass the time. I do need to have the surgery though - while the pain isn't immense it keeps progressing so it must be done, just open to the timeframe.

@IKE I've gone through and visited the best surgeons and there are plenty in California. So that's good and taken care of. The absolute best guy is in St. Louis I believe, and has a 2 year wait. Probably don't need that guy in particular, there are a lot of guys that are in the top bracket. I believe the height is reversible and tech may get better but not anything that people can predict. Now they are using titanium rods instead of whatever it was before which is considered better, and that is a new thing.
05-20-2013 10:04 PM
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Lothario Offline
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Post: #5
RE: Substantial surgery - now or later?
Slubu My Man, You are talking about Scoliosis correction with Harrington Rods Placement. Yes it is a Big Surgery but considering that you are young with no other co-morbidities you will have a Speedy Recovery and I wish you well.

Things you can do to decrease the risk of complications

1. Have the best Spine Surgeon to do your Surgery at the Hospital of his liking. You don't have to go the absolute best in USA , make sure he's the best in your town.

2. Make sure you talk to your Anesthesiologist prior to your surgery as They do monitor the working of Spinal Cord during the surgery (SSEP Monitoring) and if the surgeon puts a screw at a wrong place , he will be notified Immediately.

3. Find out what your blood group is and Look into getting some clean people donate blood for you a day before your surgery, You might not need blood at all but if you do, you have fresh blood available from people you trust.

Give me a couple of days I will PM you some more Info

Lastly don't forget to apply Hospital Game while you are admitted and at your appointments pre and post survey. I can already see you spitting game at the cute Physical Therapist Smile

"You can not fake good kids" - Mike Pence
05-20-2013 10:46 PM
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kbell Offline
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Post: #6
RE: Substantial surgery - now or later?
Isn't the height from the spine mass itself? I have scolois as well but only like 26 curve I think they called it or 56 total over the total S curve in my back. I only lost 2" but I'm 5'4". Would be 5'6" So I don't have a much total height to work with like you do. I have no desire for surgery since its not bad at all and muscles compensate for it and have stopped getting worse like a decade ago.

If you can eventually lift heavy again (squats and deadlifts), do the surgery. But try to find others who went through the surgery.
05-20-2013 10:46 PM
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DVY Offline
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RE: Substantial surgery - now or later?
All out binge for a few months traveling then surgery. The more you wait, the harder the bones get + recovery is much more difficult. This degree of scoliosis is very severe. I am not 100% sure, but I believe there could be nerve impingement as well.

Why can't you work after surgery? I suspect theyll put you in a back brace. This would be the best time to stack cash and youll literally have nothing else to do.

Just get a driver/helper (15 dollars/hour) to help you around (if need be, you can be in a wheelchair). Hell you prolly could do SA game even w/the wheelchair!

WIA- For most of men, our time being masters of our own fate, kings in our own castles is short. Even those of us in the game will eventually succumb to ease of servitude rather than deal with the malaise of solitude
(This post was last modified: 05-20-2013 11:58 PM by DVY.)
05-20-2013 11:57 PM
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bacon Offline
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Post: #8
RE: Substantial surgery - now or later?
Your young man get it over with now and you have your whole life ahead of you. Best of luck whatever you decide.

Game/red pill article links

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05-21-2013 12:03 AM
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Giovonny Offline
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Post: #9
RE: Substantial surgery - now or later?
Get it over with.
05-21-2013 12:37 AM
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Christian McQueen Offline
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Post: #10
RE: Substantial surgery - now or later?
This is intense and definitely should be thought out.

My knee-jerk reaction is for you to schedule it after your Russia trip so, Sept/Oct...? You mentioned you like football so you can have that for entertainment and if you're into it get into the betting side of things to keep it interesting.

When you're young, you'll recover faster. I'm not a medical expert, but from what I've heard from med pros this is true, so I wouldn't push it off too much longer.

If the idea of being bed-ridden or confined to a wheelchair becomes too much for a few weeks/months, I'll be happy to send over some of my stripper friends to entertain you on my tab.

Good luck with whatever decision you make and keep us updated.
05-21-2013 12:51 AM
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WesternCancer Offline
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Post: #11
RE: Substantial surgery - now or later?
I guy I know broke his back a few years ago, had to get a bunch of surgery with a similar recovery time period. It didn't really affect 'the prime of his life' as much as you'd think.

Lots of good advice here. Think it through have a plan and be in the right mindset for what you're going to go through.

I'd say #1 thing aside from doctors and rehab people would be a support group whether it be your mom baking you cookies and helping you out or a LTR to give you BJs ha. From experience its great to have some people to rely on for basic things after surgery, someone you care for.

Other than that I'd probably aim for the winter (earlier rather than later). Make a list of things to keep you occupied and all that.
(This post was last modified: 05-21-2013 03:06 AM by WesternCancer.)
05-21-2013 03:04 AM
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Neo Offline
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Post: #12
RE: Substantial surgery - now or later?
I'd take advantage of your youth and recovery powers.
(This post was last modified: 02-06-2016 04:39 PM by Neo.)
05-21-2013 05:11 AM
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Days of Broken Arrows Offline
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Post: #13
RE: Substantial surgery - now or later?
I'd be less concerned with the "when" than the "who." As in "who is doing this surgery?"

I know people who have had botched back surgery that has ruined their lives. If you live anywhere near Baltimore, I'd recommend Hopkins and can recommend a specific doctor who worked a miracle on my ex. Hit me up if you need info. (Disregard if you already know a top-notch doc -- but this advice can go for anyone.)

As for the speediness of healing, anytime before age 30 is fine. It's when you get upward of that age, recuperation takes longer. Also, during the recovery period, can't you hire/date/whatever a hot nurse or two and turn that negative into a positive? There are a lot of women who love to help out. Makes them feel useful.
(This post was last modified: 05-21-2013 05:50 AM by Days of Broken Arrows.)
05-21-2013 05:49 AM
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Sakebomb Offline
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Post: #14
RE: Substantial surgery - now or later?
Hey i'm sorry to hear about your predicament and can only imagine the pain you have to go through. But if you do end up having the surgery anyway, there's something to look forward to (just for a few months after the surgery):

Wheelchair game
05-21-2013 05:56 AM
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WestCoast Offline
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Post: #15
RE: Substantial surgery - now or later?
If you need it get it over with then. Do it in July, I would also book it with the best doctor in town so you don't back out of it and have an expert helping you. Set the date enjoy a month of the summer or so and be done with it.

In other news, this may HELP SA game, that's just a guess if you see where I'm going with this ha.

(05-20-2013 10:04 PM)slubu Wrote:  @WC I was thinking the same thing, do it in the winter where there is more downtime in general. Plus I can watch football which I like and pass the time. I do need to have the surgery though - while the pain isn't immense it keeps progressing so it must be done, just open to the timeframe.

@IKE I've gone through and visited the best surgeons and there are plenty in California. So that's good and taken care of. The absolute best guy is in St. Louis I believe, and has a 2 year wait. Probably don't need that guy in particular, there are a lot of guys that are in the top bracket. I believe the height is reversible and tech may get better but not anything that people can predict. Now they are using titanium rods instead of whatever it was before which is considered better, and that is a new thing.
(This post was last modified: 05-21-2013 08:59 AM by WestCoast.)
05-21-2013 08:59 AM
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slubu Offline
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Post: #16
RE: Substantial surgery - now or later?
Appreciate all the advice, seems like the consensus is to just get it over with. Obviously with all this downtime, my mind is going to wonder on alternate avenues of gaming. I have seen guys out in wheelchairs getting play to be honest, so that could be something to think about.

Earliest I could do it is in October probably. Already have my summer planned in Ukraine/Russia.
05-21-2013 09:59 AM
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metalhaze Offline
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Post: #17
RE: Substantial surgery - now or later?
Well am gonna go with my opinion which is against the grain of what people here have suggested.

the main question to ask is, what are the consequences of not doing the surgery ?

getting slightly shorter, having mild back pain (i.e. easily manageable with massage therapy, proper core exercise, cold/heat therapy) and not being able to lift heavy weights are in my opinion non serious sideeffects.

did you read stuff by dr. Stuart Mcgill ? he gives excellent rehab exercises.

Who cares if you got 2 inch shorter and cant lift heavy weights?

Back surgery, especially the one you are mentionning is VERY SERIOUS and the risk component is very high...I think the consequences of the surgery are much higher than living with it.

Get a second opinion and try to read scientific articles on back surgeries, most of them do not improve the lifestyle compared to people who tried alternative therapies.

The only reason to do any surgery is if there is a medical emergency, or the risks do not outweigh the benefits at all, cuz trust me, the surgery you are describing sounds VERY RISKY, they are gonna break your spine, jesus, the spinal cord is a highly sensitive and fragile thing, how reputed are the doctors? did you consult with previous patients? I personnaly would try to find alternative methods to live my life and try to postpone the surgery as much as possible until the technology improves.

that's my 2 cents.
(This post was last modified: 05-21-2013 10:45 AM by metalhaze.)
05-21-2013 10:44 AM
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DVY Offline
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Post: #18
RE: Substantial surgery - now or later?
@metalhaze- this isn't a minor scoliosis. Hes going to need surgery EVENTUALLY anyways. The longer he waits, the worse the scoilosis gets. Plus, healing is more difficult when older.

This is way beyond alternative therapy. The spine is actually physically compressing on the nerve. As the curve gets worse, the pain will intesify.

WebMD- "When back pain is present with scoliosis, it may be because the curve in the spine is causing stress and pressure on the spinal discs, nerves, muscles, ligaments, or facet joints. It is not usually caused by the curve itself"

WIA- For most of men, our time being masters of our own fate, kings in our own castles is short. Even those of us in the game will eventually succumb to ease of servitude rather than deal with the malaise of solitude
05-21-2013 10:59 AM
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Giovonny Offline
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Post: #19
RE: Substantial surgery - now or later?
WHO does the surgery is the most important thing. Doctors are just like chefs, plumbers, engineers, scientists, day gamers, lawyers, stock brokers, etc. Some are good and some are bad. Some have drug/alcohol problems and some don't. FIND THE BEST DOCTOR YOU CAN!

Follow this advice:

(05-20-2013 10:46 PM)Lothario Wrote:  Things you can do to decrease the risk of complications

1. Have the best Spine Surgeon to do your Surgery at the Hospital of his liking. You don't have to go the absolute best in USA , make sure he's the best in your town.

2. Make sure you talk to your Anesthesiologist prior to your surgery as They do monitor the working of Spinal Cord during the surgery (SSEP Monitoring) and if the surgeon puts a screw at a wrong place , he will be notified Immediately.

3. Find out what your blood group is and Look into getting some clean people donate blood for you a day before your surgery, You might not need blood at all but if you do, you have fresh blood available from people you trust.

(05-21-2013 05:49 AM)Days of Broken Arrows Wrote:  I'd be less concerned with the "when" than the "who." As in "who is doing this surgery?"

Find the best doctor you can. Enjoy your summer. Enjoy the NFL season from bed. Gamble on football alot to pass time. Get a bunch of books on tape, watch every season of every tv show that you like. Study all of your interests and curiosities. Take advantage of the down time. Come back better then ever.
(This post was last modified: 05-21-2013 12:19 PM by Giovonny.)
05-21-2013 12:19 PM
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Valentine Offline
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Post: #20
RE: Substantial surgery - now or later?
Most of the negatives would still occur if you had the surgery later in life. I'd say because of the quicker recovery, better correction, inner game issues and the fact that you wouldn't mind a break that it would be best to get the surgery done now.
05-21-2013 01:54 PM
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slubu Offline
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Post: #21
RE: Substantial surgery - now or later?
Appreciate all the comments, and McQueen's offer of strippers on call Smile Going to look into this more now, it's funny how hearing it from others makes it a lot more clear than before.
05-21-2013 05:03 PM
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harveyspecter Offline
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Post: #22
RE: Substantial surgery - now or later?
What did you decide in the end?

And does anyone have tips what exercise to do if you are diagnosed with scoliosis in a early stage?
01-27-2017 06:59 AM
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kbell Offline
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Post: #23
RE: Substantial surgery - now or later?
Go to chiropractor, avoid deadlifts and heavy squats (until the spinestop growing), and do a lot of stretching. What made mine worse was carrying around a 40 lbs backup in school.
01-27-2017 03:18 PM
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RatInTheWoods Offline
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Post: #24
RE: Substantial surgery - now or later?
Your health, its number one. You should prioritise this over partying etc.

If its better to get this done now, then do it now.

Don't look at this as a year off the prime of your life, look at it as a chance to hit the books, learn to code, learn a language or set up online shops etc.

Use the physical downtime to your advantage to do things you have always been to busy to do.

But mostly, its just about putting your health first and getting it down now to enjoy a life of less pain and better health.

Good luck.
01-27-2017 09:38 PM
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